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When Teachers Bully

08/16/10
by Pam Wright

What do we do when our children are bullied by teachers? My son has a teacher who actually calls the kids wieners and makes fun of them if they are struggling. He has a mug and sign in the classroom that say “I see stupid people.”

Unfortunately, this is not uncommon. You see it more often in middle school and high school. This teacher is allowed to continue because the principal or superintendent don’t really see the behavior as a problem. How you handle it depends in part on the age of the students.

If elementary school, your strategy needs to be… different than high school. Here is a general strategy. But, it will not be as effective if this is happening in high school – people tend to believe that older kids need to learn how to deal with jerks. Most of us had a few jerks when we were in school. It was viewed as a learning experience.

If you go to this page, you’ll find articles and resources that will help you deal with bullying behavior at school:
http://www.wrightslaw.com/info/harassment.index.htm

Advise the Administrators

Put any issues in writing.  Write a nice polite letter where you advise the principal and superintendent about what is happening (the problem) and what you think should be done about it (your solution).

The tone of your letter should not be complaining but advising them of this problem so they can take action. If you have a copy of our From Emotions to Advocacy book, you will find sample letters in the book that will help you.

Next Step: The School Board

If this doesn’t result in a change and you can’t get the administrators to take responsibility, meet with your school board member and educate him/her. You may want to invite your school board member to have breakfast or lunch with you, then describe the problem. If you take this step, it’s very important that you have documented the problems and your attempts to resolve them in writing.

Make copies of the publication below about Harassment and provide copies to the principal, superintendent, and school board members.

There are some excellent publications from the U. S. Dept of Education and Office of Civil Rights about this issue:

  • An excellent resource for parents, teachers and others who are trying to protect kids is a publication from the Office of Civil Rights, Protecting Students from Harassment and Hate Crime: A Guide for Schools. It includes a section on the definition of harassment based on disability and provides step-by-step guidance for developing a district’s written anti-harassment policy.
  • Free From EdPubs.org (ED001366B) Preventing Bullying: A Manual For Schools and Communities. This document addresses the problem of bullying in schools and defines bullying, discusses the seriousness of this behavior and the effectiveness of a comprehensive approach. The Manual presents strategies for teachers, students, and parents to use when dealing with bullying situations. It also provides examples of innovative and successful approaches used by schools in different parts of the country.

Get Support from a Child Psychologist

Get a child psychologist to meet with the person who has power and describe the damage this guy is doing to the children.  Write a follow up letter after the meeting.

However, if this is happening to older high school kids, you are not as likely to get a response that will satisfy you.

When I had jerk teachers, my parents let me know they believed in me, that they agreed the person was a jerk, that the school year would soon be over and I’d be free. The fact that they believed in me, and agreed that the person’s behavior was bad helped because I valued their opinions more than I valued the bad teacher’s opinions (or slogans on coffee cups). They also taught me that there are jerks in the world and I had to learn how to deal with them.

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71 responses so far ↓

  • 1 Amanda 09/18/14 at 10:15 am

    I am so frustrated with school. I have contacted the school counseler, principal, and superintendents office. The teacher happens to be the daughter of someone on school board. The teacher has openly admitted to me in email of ostracizing my son. This was the point I talked with superintendents office which sent me back the principal. I feel like every step I take to get my son not to be bullied by his teacher, she takes it out on him more by saying he’s doing things wrong in class which he swears he doesn’t do wrong. I am not sure what to do at this point because if I take it to the school board, I know I wont get anywhere.

  • 2 Mary 08/04/14 at 11:26 pm

    Hi. My daughter has a 504 and we live in California. She was diagnosed with A.D.D. when she was 5 and has had a 504 since then. She will be a senior in high school this year. The English department lacks the 504 skill, understanding and ability to work with my daughter. It has been difficult. Last year the teacher said she was teaching multi-sensory and modifying assignments/tests. But she was unable to produce such accommodations when asked. Instead sent me a letter on fancy letter head with verbiage from her 504. A parent of a child with a 504 don’t I have the right to pick her teacher? My daughter will have this teacher again this year!! If we do not want this teacher, which we don’t, what does the school legally have to do to fix this? I am considering BYU independent study online courses. It’s expensive!!! HELP!

  • 3 Wrightslaw 08/01/14 at 11:14 am

    Dawn: It is obvious you are upset and frustrated, perhaps as a direct result of something happening to your child at school. I’m sorry for what your child and you have experienced. But it is unfair and unrealistic to generalize that all teachers are bullyers or abusers.

    As difficult as it might be to turn your Emotions to Advocacy, outcomes will be better if you do. There is a nationwide advocacy effort to end abuse and restraint and bullying in schools. Read the information, articles, and resources on these pages and think about what steps you can take.

    http://www.wrightslaw.com/info/abuse.index.htm
    http://www.wrightslaw.com/info/harassment.index.htm

    Look for help and resources in your state or area on the Yellow Pages for Kids. http://www.yellowpagesforkids.com/

    More about learning how to become an effective advocate for your child is here: http://www.wrightslaw.com/info/advo.index.htm.

  • 4 Dawn 07/30/14 at 5:00 am

    If you like to abuse children just a get a job as a teacher of the disabled . It’s legal then it seems . Ask any parent of autistic student. More often than not untrained bully’s called teachers have abused the majority of them . The abuse is unchecked and rampant. And protected by your taxpayer dollars paying for their lawyers. Plus they will pay you to abuse them .

  • 5 Barb 06/22/14 at 9:35 pm

    When my daughter was in second grade I was going through a divorce. Her second grade teacher had a son that was representing my now ex husband in the divorce. A long time teacher began making comments to my second grader. When they drew a picture of their homes she told my daughter that she would not be able to keep living our house and told her draw a picture of a mobile home and told her she will have to move. The teacher also made derogatory comments to my daughter about me. Her husband at the time was a principal for the same school complaints would have fallen on deaf ears. My daughter now in college still comments about how horrible this teacher was to her.

    I did not know about this abuse until nearly a year later when my daughter told me when we ran into that teacher.

  • 6 mad mom 06/12/14 at 2:44 pm

    My son is at the end of second grade and has been bullied by his teacher most of the school year. Back in october they told me he was acting out and trying toleave the classroom. They put you in a very warm padded room and lock the door on bad kids. I met with the school, the teacher the principal, the school shrink and social. Ive been to so many meetings ive used all my vaction time. I believed them when they said it was my sons fault. I took priveledges away from him at home, grounded him, moved up his bed time. Mid may i went on a field trip with him and saw how his teacher screamed at not only him but all the boys. She brought 5 boys to tears. The school never tells you there are 3 other kids with the same issues.i feel horrible i didnt believe him. I tried to pull him out of school and they threatened to call dcf. Cant afford lawyer

  • 7 Esther 05/23/14 at 12:20 pm

    My daughter has ADHD and is under an IEP in High School. Yesterday her IEP Case Manager threatened her and belittled her while she was in class. She forgot to return an assessment he asked for and came in her class very upset. He said things like, “after you poop in the morning, do you need your mom to remind you to wipe”, and, “Well, I guess I will just have to “forget” that you signed up for summer school”. And this case manager is the Coach of the High School football team. I want to do something other than complain about it. This was a direct attack/bullying against her disability since being forgetful is part of ADHD. Don’t they train the “case managers”? What can I do?

  • 8 luther 05/20/14 at 1:50 pm

    The sad reality is school is a business. As a parent if you approach administrators with these difficulties, they will much rather verbally appease you and do nothing, rather than taking on the teachers union. The only way to seek results is with a threat against their purse strings, using a lawyer and threats of civil action.

    If a peace officer were to violate someones civil rights, under the color of the authority offered the position, It would violate 42 U.S.C. § 1983. There is much attention given to “bad” police that abuse their authority, yet not as much to “bad” teachers.
    In example, a previous post pointed out their childs front pants pockets being riffled through by a teacher. Is this a potential violation of the students 4th amendment rights under the color of authority granted the teacher? get a lawyer and be heard.

  • 9 Wrightslaw 05/14/14 at 9:56 pm

    Kimberly: The Family Education Rights and Privacy Act (FERPA) ensures that parents have access to their children’s educational records and to protect the privacy rights of parents and children by limiting access to these records without parental consent. http://www.wrightslaw.com/info/ferpa.index.htm

    Have you documented your concerns in writing to the teacher / school administration? Have you requested a meeting to discuss your concerns?

  • 10 Kimberly 05/13/14 at 2:02 am

    My son attends a prestigious private school who is known for its arrogance. A teacher in highschool has told my son in class with peers that he is the laziest person he knows. He has told him, he will fail in his chosen career of business. He has told a student in the class that he would fail my son. When my son asked him to stop giving him “xxxx”, he challenged my son to get out of his seat and tell it to his face. He and 4 other staff members berated my son for over an hour about a school project he did. The project was about giving student’s a voice and allowing them to give constructive feedback like the Universities do to improve teacher performance. What should I do about this? I seriously would like to sue the school as they have violated FERPA laws.

  • 11 Joe 05/03/14 at 12:07 pm

    I am a teacher and have never been accused of bullying until last year from a parent who has a history of accusing her child’s teachers of bullying. Simply put asking the student multiple times to open a book, even nicely, to this parent is bullying. What should the penalty be for parents like that?
    The danger is also parent like that diminish the credibility of parents who have legitimate complaints of teacher bullying.

  • 12 Kay 04/25/14 at 7:15 am

    My son is a third grader that is constantly being harrassed by his teacher. My son is not a behavior problem and is very easy going. He is a very happy kid. My son is a little naive for his age. In this day and age, my husband and I appreciate his “naivity” however, at times he does not even realize what his teacher is doing. But his overall personality has changed due to her bullying. The other day he came to me and said, “I feel like nobody wants me.” He breaks down and cries very easily. I am going forward today, I am NOT the one to tolerate bullying of any kind!

  • 13 Vonda 04/22/14 at 7:32 pm

    My daughter was struggling with trig back in 10th or 11th grade, her teacher then was no help. My daughter graduated from college, made the honor roll. Today this very same teacher came to her work, my daughter is a Vet Technician, and was talking negatively about her to her employer, saying “can’t believe she made it” or something to that effect, it’s been 9 yrs, this teacher is nothing but a bully and many students at school now have had issues with her. What can I do?

  • 14 sharon 04/06/14 at 8:31 pm

    My daughters science teacher (male) is really bothering and bullying her. Shes a very polite and shy child and does what she should to participate in class so i dont know why this is a continuous problem. If she is talking as well as the whole class is, he gives her a detention. If someone is laughing that sits near her, she’s the one who gets kicked out of the class room. She comes home nearly every day with tears in her eyes. What do i do? She’s only in fifth grade.

  • 15 CASS 03/26/14 at 10:48 am

    The problem with dealing with a jerk in the world does nor compare to dealing with a teacher that is a bully. When you are in a school setting you can not very well walk away or ignore the teacher- class leader!. No child should have to deal with a Teacher that is making it hard on them. The child becomes very frustrated and begins to act up. You can only push some one into a corner for so long. The issue of Teachers being bullies needs to be addressed a lot more then it is. We read all about the firm stand schools are taking against bullying – but those same standards are not being put into place when the Teacher is the bully- it needs to be stopped. We do not have to accept it and learn to deal. It’s not acceptable.

  • 16 dave in illinois 03/19/14 at 8:11 pm

    My middle daughter was followed into the restroom by the principle and she tried telling me it was part of her behavior mod plan, her pe teacher stuck her hands in my daughters front pockets of her pants while she was wearing them because another girl claimed she stole her money and ipod, this list could go on forever and NOTHING was ever done…now they have decided my next younger daughter is turning out to be a poor listener because they have given her 4 detentions this year for chewing gum BUT other students continue to do it. What can we do?

  • 17 Anonymus 03/18/14 at 9:25 pm

    Whats happened to me is like wayyyyyyyyy worse comparing to your stories! So I ask my teacher several times for help and she says no. she sent me to the science teachers room who she’s friends with. Then the science teacher snapchats my dumb work to the math teacher and captions it stupid! Then she calls my math teacher and said “this girl has no hope” .. Then I was asked to go see my math teacher again and I thought she was going to clear my doubts but instead she throws my papers at me in rage and says i’m useless. Do I need to report this!! I really didn’t exaggerate this one bit.

  • 18 Kelly 03/18/14 at 9:44 am

    Thank you. My son’s teacher called him a jerk in class infront of his peers. Long story but Im looking for help on how to deal with it.

  • 19 Meredith 03/10/14 at 10:26 pm

    Tina…had this problem with my step son. We ultimately had to remove him from his school, his teacher was doing so much damage that it would be hard to communicate with my son when I picked him up he was always angry. Document absolutely anything and everything you can and call a lawyer, see if there is some kind of legal assistance that can help you file a complaint against the schoolf or allowing it and against the teacher that is bullying your child. It’s not an easy journey and takes diligence, but when you are fighting for the rights of someone who can’t ultimately fight for themselves and it’s you child….you would be surprised as to how resouceful you can become….start googling information, things your curious about, start digging and see what you find…good luck!

  • 20 Meredith 03/10/14 at 10:17 pm

    I am at my witts end with my daughter’s Spanish teacher. All year long Isabelle (my daughter) has been bullied and berated by this woman. So I sit down with the teach, principal and guidance…nothing came out of the meeting which was two weeks ago…today and everyday since my daughter has come home angry, frustrated and in tears because of this one teacher. Even though this woman looked me in my face and said I like your daughter she needs to listen more…ok…so we literally seperate Isabelle from the other student’s in the room and still no difference, she still belittels, berates and verbally whips my daughter not only in the period that she has with her, but through out the school day when Isabelle might see her, and the principle aint any better…they back up their teachers no matter what….time to go to the big boys! I tried!

  • 21 Tina 03/03/14 at 2:14 pm

    Hello. My son has autism and is in the 5th grade. he has 2 paras. he does great with the morning para! But the afternoon one seems to not know how to work with a child with autism. I have tried to talk to the school but they will not listen to me. I feel this teacher is bullying my son. How do I find out what his rights are?

  • 22 Tyffannie 09/03/13 at 4:33 pm

    I am at a loss my son is in a predominantly white school and he is harassed by the teachers. I didn’t automatically think race until the teacher thought it was funny that one of the students said he couldn’t sit near her because he was black. Now it is the next school year and my son has been in school for 2 days. Day one: he was screamed at for tying his shoe. Day 2: he came home saying that the teacher got into his face practically touching nose to nose and yelled at him… When I try to talk to the teachers they treat me like I am a monster or something. They roll their eyes and deny all. I love the idea of recording this but it seems that they have this hatred for my son all the way up the chain to the top gun in the school. He is only 6 and shouldn’t have to deal with this.

  • 23 Bethany 08/31/13 at 1:12 am

    We need HELP!!!!!
    My son is in Kindergarten, has only been going for about 3 weeks now and since day 1 he has ended up in the principles office because the teacher does not want to deal with him. My husband and I have met with the teach and the principal at different times. My son is now being evaluated for ADHD. I have been at the school twice when I have heard teacher yell at my son and even told me that “She just cant handle him anymore”. She has been teaching kindergarten for 17 years and I was shocked to hear this coming from her. She has given up on my son. From just being in the classroom for 20min, I could tell she disliked him and he “irritated” her. She pretends like he is not there. She did this while I was in the classroom. He has told me that he is scared of her and does not want to go to school. He is only 5 yrs old.

  • 24 alice 06/01/13 at 5:29 pm

    I have the same problem with a bully teacher. He actually failed my daughter and prevented her from graduating high school. He told her on the last day of classes 5 days before graduation saying she didn’t turn in her work. She had previously complained to principal because he was berating and bullying her .

  • 25 Sharon L. 06/01/13 at 11:00 am

    Teresa,
    I knew of a child that was starting to be treated like your son & finally the teacher got so mad she actually threw a chair at him. My friend was able to sue the school for asault & won. I think you may have a case here as well. No one should have to endure what your child has endured. You may need to get an attorney to help you at this point. You can try to set up a meeting first but bring a professional in with you that knows your son’s disability & see if you can come up with a plan. If not you may have to go to an attorney.

  • 26 Teresa 05/28/13 at 1:56 pm

    “Justice For my son”
    My Child Was Bullied, Belittled, Labeled, Segregated, Harassed, Embarrassed, Denied access to check out a library book & class work for the last five months of school. Then the last two weeks of school was told he has to attend mandatory summer school. After hearing that he finally voiced his feelings, he told the Principal that it’s not fair! Not fair because the Reading teacher did not give him the help he needed & wouldn’t let him check out a library book. How could he excel with out given opportunity or help he needed. The principal became angry and aggressive, he grabbed my Son by his arm and my Son told him to let him go. He did not. He then grabbed his other arm, twisting both of his arms behind his back. He had to be told by the Asst Principal to let him go. Asst Principal got my son away. My Son was sent home!

  • 27 Gigi 05/15/13 at 12:32 pm

    Sharon, Thank you for you advice. I really appreciate it. My child has been through such a difficult year. He is even having health issues that are because of his treatment. I am so entirely sick myself, to have had to watch him come home everyday so upset! I am contacting a lawyer today. I don’t know what else to do. I have pleaded for help from the administration ofc. Only to get my son more retaliation & punishment. I have never seen any situation like this we are dealing with this year. I appreciate your advice. Thank you Gigi

  • 28 Teresa 05/15/13 at 12:26 pm

    Michael, This is devastating! I have begged for the schools help. It is the end of the year. I was just made aware that my son has been denied access to check out a library book for over 5 months. Not denied access by the librarian. Denied access by his Reading Teacher. She has been well aware of his weakness in Reading. So much has happened this year. My son has even become sick. Because he just can’t take this treatment any longer. Just today he had to turn around and come back home while on the way to school. He has Yet Another bloody nose & sick to his stomach. We are seeing a doctor & specialist due to his stomach issues. I am really tired of watching my son be treated so badly! I’ve contacted the Board of Education, and a attorney. I don’t know what else to do…. Maybe next I’ll have to contact the news. It’s truly frustrating!

  • 29 Teresa 05/15/13 at 12:16 pm

    To Denise***
    I’m In!!! I’m going through a huge issue with my child and a teacher who has really affected his learning this year. He’s been belittled, harassed, embarassed, punished extensively, segregated, denied access to the school library. This is a Reading teacher! She’s well aware of his weakness in Reading. I’ve begged for the schools help until I’m blue in the face! I’ve gone up the chain of command. Collected & documented every situation. I have other parents, students, teachers, and staff witnesses. I’m in! What do yku suggest?
    Thanks, Teresa

  • 30 Denise 05/08/13 at 11:26 am

    OK LISTEN UP!! I am going through the same crap, the only way is to come together and pass a law that protects our children against higher up bullying .. WHOS IN? I say we take this to our representatives and show them the abuse that is out there, HIB law is kid on kid there is no protection for our children because of there union .. they are not above the law.. Someone needs to do something!! Apparently this behavior is everywhere!!

  • 31 Sharon L. 04/15/13 at 6:36 pm

    Gigi, It is obvious that this teacher is not trained on the needs of spec ed children or children with differences or she is just mean. You are correct in bringing this up to everyone. Have you had a IEP meeting to discuss this? This way you may request a solution to the problem. If they refuse they must put the reason in writing to you. Harrassment is very serious & I think they would take it seriously & do something. If not you may have to take legal action. A simple fix might be to remove the child & put him into a different class with an easy going teacher. This may be a personality clash as well. I have actually moved my child to a different school within the school system to get away from a teacher similar to this. No matter what we tried to do they could not work together. The new school was great for him.

  • 32 Gigi 04/15/13 at 2:41 pm

    I have a 13 year old son. He’s attending a middle school. One of his teachers has been harrasing him from the first day of junior high. She has belittled him in front of the class. She has embarrassed him in front of the class. She has punished him for not wanting to talk to her, when she thinks he needs to talk. This has affected my sons curriculum & had caused him to become depressed. Some of the statements she’s made to him is,”if your going to read & act like a second grader… I will treat you like one.” That’s just one of the many hurtful statements she’s made to my son in the front of the class. She has made him sit in the back of the classroom from the beginning of this year. I’ve met with the teacher, principal, asst principal & spoken to the Superintendent of the district about all of the disturbing and harrasing issues. Help!

  • 33 Michael 03/24/13 at 2:12 pm

    Just look at the comments on this thread. After doing so, everyone should be painfully aware of what happens when “public” education becomes “government” education, and teachers can do whatever they want because they have a contract and a union protecting them. The comments here are appalling, and are no different than what i am going through with my 5th grade son. The administration wants to help, but can do nothing because of the union. So, should I simply allow this teacher to abuse my son? No, after exhausting all attempt to resolve this within the system, I’ve hired a lawyer and will sue the teacher. This is the first time the teacher has shown any concern. I have her attention. I will lose, because of union support, but this has brought an unwanted spotlight on the teacher. I’m convinced this is the only way to stop the abuse.

  • 34 shannon 03/12/13 at 11:24 pm

    i have an issue with my daughters high school. 3 times she has been diagnosed with pdd, the superentendant emailed me and said he didnt believe it. she has never been in trouble till high school then all of a sudden like 5 asd’s. she gets in trouble for things others dont. kids make fun of her teacher calls her a liar, even when kids admit they did it. she is now on deppression meds and anxiety pills. she wanted to quit school threatened to hurt herself. we went to oregon, but had to come home due to family illness. she was there two weeks and did amazing, loved school. wasnt taking any meds there now she is panicing again. something dont add up. the superintendant and staff are all tight and his wife is the counselor, so there is litterally no one to get help from, what do i do?
    any suggestions would be appreciated.

  • 35 Latasha 03/12/13 at 6:54 pm

    My child has been harassed and questioned about everything you can think of and because they keep getting caught in a lie the teachers have rebelled looking for everything under the sun no person is perfect and if they search for imperfections in every child you will find what you look for I have done all the steps they do not work there must be accountability. The same accountability if I was some wild devious liar as these sad excuse for leaders pretend to be.

  • 36 melissa 03/06/13 at 11:32 pm

    My son has been bullyed by kids at his school i have talk to everybody i k in the school and they dont seem to help they call him a lieer i dont k what to do it hurts me that my kid dose not feel safe in school thats not how he should feel teachers should be helping kids not calling them names and getting away with it i just dont k what else to do my heart brakes for my son hes a good kid

  • 37 TeAra 03/05/13 at 7:19 pm

    My son is 9..about 45 lbs and his teacher is also the principle. He has been harassing my son and physically abusing him. So far he has jerked him by his wrists causing him to hit his elbow leaving a bruise as well on his wrist which I have photos of. He has jerked items such as tote bag out of his hand causing him to get burns again photos. He makes fun of him in front of the class. The rest of the teachers in this school are the same as they did it to my oldest who in the end dropped out of school. I do not know what to do. When I reported in the past it only made it worse. Please help.

  • 38 Sherre 03/04/13 at 12:40 am

    MICHAELINA – I am so sorry to hear about the problems your daughter is having with the music teacher/bully. My suggestion would be to express your concerns in writing in the form of a letter. You need to give dates and times, where the bullying occurred and exactly what happened. Every time an incident happens, send the principal and school board a letter. If you don’t put it in writing, it is as if it never happened. Good luck to you and your daughter.

  • 39 Michaelina 03/01/13 at 12:59 am

    My daughter is a senior in high school. She has been having seizures for over a year now and still being evaluated by doctors (no 504 plan done yet). Music is her life. She has been accepted into the music program at a local college. Unfortunately, she’s stressed b/c the high school band teacher has been bullying her off and on this school year. My daughter used to be one of her favorites. Since my daughter started having seizures, the teacher has treated her badly: tells her she’s lazy; says she’s “faking it”. She’s even kept her from participating in graded activities as a result of the seizure episodes; the teacher has them called panic attacks and tantrums. I have spoken with the principal in the past w/o resolution. I spoke again with the principal, as well as the school board, but I don’t have hope for results. Any suggestions?

  • 40 roxanne 02/11/13 at 10:16 am

    my son’s 4th grade science teacher threw a dryerase marker at him and hit him in the leg it left a welt mark thru the pants this. incident was witnessed by all of his classmates. HE SAID THIS SAME TEACHER IS ALWAYS SLAPPING OTHER UPSIDE THE back of the head .Administration placed her on administrative leave for one day w/pay pending investigation and brought her back to school to teach what do I do I made a police report but, where do I go from here?

  • 41 Jennifer 02/05/13 at 10:05 am

    Anya–

    Document when she does these things. If she refuses to move you, ask your parents to have a meeting with her—requesting what you want, not complaining. If it doesn’t get resolved at that point, go over her head.

  • 42 Anya 02/04/13 at 12:25 pm

    I am a student and I have been singled out by my math teacher. She is a bit “old school” and I think she is ready for retirement. She takes her frustration out on me. I once asked her to move me to the front of the class so I could see and that the bo in front of me was unintentionally blocking by view. She responded saying I should get glasses. I have 20/20 vision but my parents have tried humoring her by getting my eyes checked. The doctor diagnosed me with convergance insufficiancy, and a gave my parents a note to give to my teacher. She responded by saying “Are you sure he’s a real doctor?” Very unprofessional: why would you refuse to accept a legal document? And why would you deny the request to sit at the front to pay attention?

  • 43 elese 11/29/12 at 3:17 am

    I am in grade 7. my teacher is always bullying the kids in my class. He says he only resorts to this sort of behaviour because he is sick and tired of the attitudes of the people in our class. My parents have never liked this teacher and other parents think the same. He is generally cruel to kids for no other reason than “I hate kids” yes he actually said that. Why is he working with kids if he hates them? I seriously don’t know! Thank you for the support you have given me and I believe you are doing a great job as i would reccomend this site to any in the same position.

  • 44 diane 11/17/12 at 6:41 am

    I need to know. what documents I bring with me when I go before the community college Dean, who has a meeting with I the Student and my instructor whom I know to be bully me in class?

  • 45 Amy 11/13/12 at 3:03 am

    I have worked 7 yrs in the SpEd dept. at the local school system teaching sign language to nonverbal,hearing students for communication. I witnessed the certified classroom teacher assault a student with autism and reported it up the chain of command all the way to the director of schools. Neither the special ed supervisor or the director of schools responded to my written report- not even to ask the child’s name or to get details of the abuse. I made a report (as mandated by law) to CDS, and made calls to the state dept. of Ed in TN to make them aware. However, because I was neither a parent or teacher, they would not take my statement. Shortly after I was fired. Unfortunately I was told that a school is a government entity and has sovereign immunity and TN is “fire at will” state. Who protects kids when they can’t speak for themselves?

  • 46 Timothy 03/02/12 at 3:03 pm

    My fourteen year old son who is in the 9th grade had a sub (teacher) in his Spanish class. He had no prepared lesson the first day and gave the students a free period. He even allowed the students to turn their chairs and play cards. The second day he did show a movie but allowed the students to play cards while the movie was on. He walked up to my son and one of his classmates and said why are you two so loud? why are you sitting so close together? Is he your boyfriend? Do you want to kiss him? Some of the students then made vulgar comments like: They”re faggots. He then laughed along with the students instead of reprimanding them. This is unacceptable to my wife and myself. To be a lazy or lousy teacher is one thing. To go as far as sexual harassment and then to laugh with the students when they chime in is unforgivable.Shame!!!!!

  • 47 Samantha 02/08/12 at 8:07 pm

    My friends 14 year old son just got suspended for 3.5 days for being in the halls. He said he was going to the bathroom and back to his class. He has been known to be trouble some but his father and I believe this is a little extreme of a punishment for going to the bathroom and back. Since October he has been suspended twice for fighting and this time he’s also been kicked off the bus for sassing the bus driver or not moving from the seat he was in b/c the driver wanted him in the back not the front. I by no means am saying he’s a good kid but he’s not bad and to me every time he gets in trouble the punishment seems a little extreme. Is there anything we can do to stop the extremeness of his punishment? If anyone knows of something please respond.

  • 48 ms love 12/20/11 at 7:21 pm

    Thank you so much for the information Ms. B. I do put everything in writing. That little information you gave me means a lot to me. I never had this problem. Thank you. I was looking for help and wrightslaw gave me an answer and hope. God is good.

  • 49 SusanB 12/18/11 at 7:49 pm

    MsLove – Look at your child’s IEP goals, read the Wright’s books, learn how to advocate for your child! No one else has more to lose than you, other than your child! Goals should be based on where your child is in his specific area of need, then you will need to begin monitoring his progress. Do everything and I do mean EVERYTHING in writing. Contact your state’s parent training and information center, read ALL the books by the Wrights, make yourself an expert on your kid’s disability and the special education law. YOU CAN DO THIS!

  • 50 ms love 12/16/11 at 8:40 pm

    I am so scared that my child is not learning in school. His teacher is not teaching. All the teacher does is let him play chess all day. Even though my child has a disabity I still know he can learn. His teaher is not teaching him and picks on him for no reason. No one will listen.I’m scared that he’s not going to complete his IEP goals. What should i do?

  • 51 Wendy 12/16/11 at 2:53 pm

    We are going through this with my fifth grader. He has been bullied by a teacher. She makes him sit facing a wall for hours and sometimes days at a time. He has to sit in second grade for weeks at a time. This is their discipline policy, BIST. It is very bizzarre, prison like environment. I have asked the teacher and principal what he has done? Tlking or getting out of his seat. This is the craziest thing I’ve ever heard. There is alot more to this story, to much to write here. I am in Missouri would like to know if anybody else has had these problems.

  • 52 reina 12/15/11 at 7:05 pm

    My daughter is in middle school and she came to me about her teacher picking on several boys and one more than the others saying he has ADD, that his parents should beat him. yelled at kids to shut up. tells students they’re undisciplined and worthless. then a para educator grabbed my daughter several times after telling my daughter to go to the office and blocked her way. and when my daughter tried to go around that’s when the woman grabbed her . My daughter told her stop dont touch me, your not suppose to touch kids, pushed the woman to run to the office. The woman laughed after my daughter and hollered call the police. she hit me. My daughter was cited and nothing happened to the para.

  • 53 GGIRL 10/30/11 at 10:59 pm

    I went to a meeting at my child’s school this week, and I think my child is being bullied by a teacher and the principal. During the meeting she would ask my child questions and then repeatedly interrupt her while she was trying to answer. The teacher was argumentative and sarcastic to my child and myself, and the school principal sat and did nothing. The principal did not acknowledge us at the start of or at the end of the meeting and even slammed the door to the conference room when he left. We did not “take the bait,” and remained calm and polite during the meeting. My child is in high school and has had a very difficult time for the last two years. We have filed a state complaint against our district and won. I think my daughter is being bullied and retaliated against because we filed a complaint. Is there anything we can do?

  • 54 Karen 10/28/11 at 12:36 pm

    We had this problem when my son was in 6th grade. I actually found out from parents of other children who reported what this teacher was doing to my son. (my son, at that age, was not a good reporter) After approaching first the school principal then the school board without anyone taking it seriously, I wrote to both the principal and SB again, telling them if this teacher’s behavior continued, I would go to the newspaper. THIS finally got their attention. The teacher abruptly stopped all bullying tactics in the classroom – at least for that year!

  • 55 Sandra 10/28/11 at 11:41 am

    I want to take a few minutes of your time to say a very heartfelt THANK YOU for all the information you share and also your wisdom. As a parent of an autistic child and a member of the autism community, I am trying to educate myself and others on all things that involve … autism and disabilities. If I can learn that and maybe even more, I intend to give back as often and as much as I possibly can. Again, thank you for this website and please continue the GREAT JOB you all are doing!! Much love and respect to each and every one of you!!! :)

  • 56 Samantha 10/28/11 at 11:41 am

    I do agree that kids need to learn how to handle obnoxious ppl, they are everywhere!! But i disagree when it comes to a special needs child, mine are severe autistics and would never understand that it was not literal.They take everything at face value,and do not understand the meaning of just the little things. There is your difference. The special child would think they really are stupid or worse about themselves. That is wrong. If you already know that kids are struggling with self image why take it upon yourself to toughen them up , that will come later.

  • 57 Lorene 10/28/11 at 11:34 am

    My daughter’s teacher bullied her and even put her hands on her to the point where she reacted so explosively that its what actually initiated her being diagnosed as severely emotionally disturbed by the school and put in a special day class for ED kids. After all assessments were complete, the district’s experts said there is nothing wrong with her, she doesn’t even qualify for Spec Ed.

  • 58 Cathy 10/28/11 at 11:23 am

    My initial reaction to this was to tell the teacher, in as nice a way as possible, that it was inappropriate. If that doesn’t work, then I would send an e-mail to the principal advising that I attempted to work out differences with the teacher directly on such and such a date, but that I was unsuccessful, so now I’m turning to them for assistance.

    Sometimes, depending on the school district, sending a letter on what they may view as a “benign” issue can turn a school off.

    I understand the need for documentation – but I wouldn’t want to get a letter from my son’s school that he was failing, etc. I would prefer my son’s teacher to pick up the phone way before we got to that point to discuss difficulties he may be having in class.

  • 59 Juan G 04/14/11 at 7:15 am

    What do you do if the bullying is at aimed parents by educators. The teachers and staff present a united stances against the ‘claims’ they report. Why aren’t a parents rights recognized and respected a clear hands-on- definition of a parent’s role and rights in the IEP process?

    Teacher’s are given too much leeway and very little oversight. I found this out over the last 5 years as I advocated for my son.

  • 60 SusanB 02/22/11 at 7:28 am

    Janie, the bullying you speak of can result in a denial of FAPE. If you are not documenting the bullying in writing to the school, you should be, in as non threatening way as possible. I had a similar issue. 2 teachers who had never taught my son, bullied him relentlessly during class changes. He was not allowed to walk down a certain side of the hall, drink out of a certain water fountain, use a certain bathroom. He was coming home crying into my lap, asking, “Why do they treat me like a freak, Mom?” I began by asking, in writing, of teachers who did have him, if they were seeing behavior problems. They were not. I also had 17 emails I had saved over a 3 year period, documenting what a fine upstanding youn man he was. This gave me all the data I needed to put the building administrator on notice.

  • 61 janie 02/21/11 at 9:03 pm

    my son is in the 3rd grade he is being bully by his teacher. Teacher tells him he is a failer.

  • 62 Sharon L. 10/04/10 at 7:34 pm

    Carolyn I agree with you that teachers do not read the IEP and often do not get a copy of the IEP. I always put a copy of the IEP in the mailbox and get the email address of the teachers for my son’s. This helped communication. I know we should not have to do this but it is better than fighing all of the time with the school. I understand what happened to your daughter and how a miscommunication with a teacher can get escalated and it always comes down on the student. I ended up requesting a behavior assessment and got one and we added it to the IEP. This held the teachers accountable for some of the triggers that cause escalation. What a difference it made.

  • 63 SusanB 10/03/10 at 8:41 pm

    Carolyn, I take a proactive approach. On back to school night, I take a copy of the IEP to the teacher. Accommodations & other important info are highlighted. I tell her how much I am looking forward to working with her. I tell her I know she must be terribly busy getting her classroom ready and she has many kids to get to know. I tell her I am giving her a copy of the IEP so she will have one less thing to do, something I want to take off her plate. The next day I send a thank you note, telling her how much I enjoyed meeting her; again stressing I am looking forward to working with her. I say I hope the copy of the IEP I provided to her will be helpful. I keep a copy of my note. Teachers always appreciate this. It goes a long way in building that relationship. You also have documentation she has seen the IEP.

  • 64 Carolyn 10/03/10 at 10:26 am

    My daughter in this past year had a couple of teachers that knew she had severe ADHD and Bipolar Deprssion. She had an incident where she did not hear the teacher request to get off of the computer. The teacher just came up and unplug the computer and started to yell at her. She did this serveral times. My daughter got upset and start to yell at her. Make a long story short my daughter received two tickets for assault. And she fail her class. Many teacher never read the IEP or say they never get them or just never follow them.

  • 65 Carolyn 09/30/10 at 11:41 am

    Setting an example is not the main means of influencing another, it is the only means.”-Albert Einstein

  • 66 Sherri 09/22/10 at 1:37 am

    Our son was bullied in 8th grade by his intervention specialist. He has Asperger’s. We were trying to get her to follow his IEP. She would scribe for him and then refuse to give him the notes until she made a copy. He would never get them. This also happened with classwork. She would scribe for him on tests, but would not write down everything he said. He pointed this out to her. She would tell him not to worry, she would be the one grading his tests and she knew what he meant. I tried talking to the school about this. We told them his IEP was not being followed. We begged for help. I was told my son needed psychological counseling. They would move him to another class, but he would lose his services. My son is now angry at all teachers and does not trust them. He is genuinely afraid. I wish I had read this article two years ago.

  • 67 Diana 09/09/10 at 10:27 am

    I had a problem with a first grade teacher that bullied my daughter. This was very upsetting to me as it was the last weeks of school and my daughter would tell me that she didn’t want to go to school. This brought me alot of stress as I felt I was forcing my daughter to go into a situation that was harming her. I spoke to the principal and the teacher took it against my child when the principal talked to her about it, I had to confront the teacher this was a very hard situation as I felt helpless.

  • 68 Elizabeth’s dad 08/31/10 at 9:10 pm

    This is useful information. I only wish I’d known about it before writing a letter slamming the monster of a school psychologist we had to deal with…would have sugarcoated it a bit more.

  • 69 Jen 08/31/10 at 12:50 pm

    A Phoenix family law attorney told her client that the local court does not consider “tutoring” to be an extra expense to be added in calculating child support unless the child is “seriously handicapped or mentally retarded”. The child a 9th grader diagnosed with Auditory Processing Disorder, and is years behind grade level in math, reading and writing. What citation of law mandates the judge recognize APD and not discriminate as to extra care/services needed by the child?

  • 70 karen 08/28/10 at 6:49 am

    Am I the only parent who finds the very notion of having to turn to advocates and attorneys to meet my child’s needs within the walls of an educational institution appalling?

    I have an IDEA on how to argue away ‘MINIMAL BENEFIT’, furthermore, the ‘may’ words sprinkled around the statute need to be deleted

    Until this is accomplished, realized potential, for the majority of special education students is simply not going to happen.

  • 71 Mike 08/25/10 at 12:01 pm

    Many teachers attempt to use humor to build rapport with students. This can be a great strategy IF used appropriately. Generally it works best if the teachers poke fun at themselves – when doing this to students, they better make darn sure their relationship with that students makes that possible without creating hard feelings. As a former high school principal, I wouldn’t have come down on a teacher the way I would if they were, say, not complying with the terms of a student’s IEP, but I would let them know that this was not appropriate and insist that they find another way to create rapport with students that doesn’t cause students to feel humiliated. The classroom is supposed to be a safe, secure environment for everyone.